July 7th, 2010
05:08 AM GMT
(CNN) - Just six weeks after a government crackdown on protesters, the Tourism Authority of Thailand has announced a bold marketing plan to grow international arrivals in the Southeast Asian nation by 1 million next year.
The tourism authority says they hope to add $18.5 billion to the economy in 2011. Tourism in Thailand makes up over 6 percent of its gross domestic product and employs about one million Thais.
As CNN’s Dan Rivers wrote last week, the economy appears to be shrugging off the recent problems. Thailand is on course to chart 6 percent growth in gross domestic product this year.
Over the course of the protests, more than 80 people died and 1,500 others were injured in the unrest. Part of Thailand remains under emergency law, which empowers the military to take charge of security – an emergency rule that was extended for another three months in many parts of the country on Tuesday.
Analysts say that will likely keep tourists and investment dollars away. An analyst for Kasikorn Bank estimates that the political unrest could shave as much as 2 percent off the country’s total economic output if the political crisis continues.
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